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2009 Agendas & Minutes

January 21, 2009 - Minutes

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City of Richmond Meeting Minutes

Public Works & Transportation Committee

 

Date:

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Place:

Anderson Room

Richmond City Hall

Present:

Councillor Linda Barnes, Chair

Councillor Sue Halsey-Brandt, Vice-Chair

Councillor Derek Dang

Councillor Ken Johnston

Councillor Harold Steves

Mayor Malcolm Brodie

Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:30 p.m.

 

 

 

MINUTES

 

 

1.

It was moved and seconded

 

 

That the minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee held on Wednesday, November 19, 2009, be adopted as circulated.

 

 

CARRIED

 

 

 

NEXT COMMITTEE MEETING DATE

 

 

2.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009 (tentative date) at 4:30 p.m. in the Anderson Room.

 

 

 

ENGINEERING & PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT

 

 

3.

MANAGEMENT OF DISPOSABLE SHOPPING BAGS

(Report:  January 6, 2009, File No.:  10-6405-01/2009-Vol 01) (REDMS No. 2554391)

 

 

Suzanne Bycraft, Manager, Fleet & Environmental Programs advised that Barry Penner, Minister of the Environment had written to Lois Jackson, Chair, Metro Vancouver Board (MV), regarding MV’s request that the provincial government implement a provincial ban on single-use disposable shopping bags. 

 

 

The Province’s response to MV was that the policy of the Provincial Government, respecting waste management and recycling, was to shift responsibility for managing products at their end-of-life from local governments and the general taxpayer, to industry and consumers under the Province’s Recycling Regulation.

 

 

Ms. Bycraft further advised that the Recycling Council of British Columbia’s (RCBC) position on the issue of single-use shopping bags includes all single-use bags, not just those made of plastic. 

 

 

It is RCBC’s position that the issue be addressed through the Province’s Recycling Regulation, holding producers responsible for managing the bag products throughout their entire life cycle.

 

 

A brief discussion ensued during which reference was made to the issue of recycling plastic water bottles being addressed under a separate program.

 

 

It was moved and seconded

 

 

(1)

That the Minister of Environment and Metro Vancouver be advised that the City of Richmond supports an Extended Producer Responsibility program for the management of disposable shopping bags.

 

 

(2)

That Metro Vancouver be encouraged to introduce an education and outreach initiative designed to reduce consumer use of disposable shopping bags.

CARRIED

 

 

 

PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT

 

 

4.

TRAFFIC SAFETY ADVISORY COMMITTEE – PROPOSED 2009 INITIATIVES

(Report:  December 12, 2008, File No.:  01-0100-20-TSAD1-01/2008-Vol 01) (REDMS No. 2529504)

 

 

Victor Wei, Director, Transportation, introduced Karon Trenaman and stated that she was the City’s new ICBC travel representative tasked with working on traffic safety initiatives with City staff funded via ICBC’s Road Safety Improvement Program.

 

 

Discussion ensued about traffic safety and in particular on:

 

 

  •  

the success of the “V-Calm” Driver Awareness Signs installed in 2008 is quantified by the recorded observed speeds of the vehicles;

 

 

  •  

the on-going work to explore such initiatives as improving safety measures for the visually impaired at crosswalks;

 

 

  •  

the “Way To Go! Program” was dissolved due to a loss of funding; other  programs will continue to encourage students walk, bike, carpool or use transit to get to school;

 

 

  •  

staff is exploring the re-design of the signage displayed here pedestrians can activate a flashing amber light as a warning device to clarify the message to pedestrians to not step out until the way is clear;

 

 

  •  

using communications outlets such as the City website and the notice board, the City educates residents about traffic safety programs;

 

 

  •  

the phased program to upgrade arterial road crosswalks with internally lit overhead signs continues;

 

 

  •  

the City encourages school zone safety through a toolkit, education of students, and participating in programs encouraging students to identify solutions to safety issues;

 

 

  •  

the information regarding the City’s electric vehicles is to be made available to the Advisory Committee on the Environment for their comments;

 

 

  •  

the importance of including the rational of the benefits of amber pedestrian signals over red lights is incorporated into education materials for students, seniors and other residents;

 

 

  •  

the three-fold rationale is: (i) the provincial jurisdiction relied upon by the City to make decisions; (ii) the advantage is that amber lights minimize the delay of the traffic flow and is an operational efficiency; (iii) it costs less to install amber devices, and three special crosswalks can be installed for the cost of installing one red light;

 

 

  •  

the Motor Vehicle Safety Act stipulates that drivers who approach a cross walk must stop and yield to pedestrians in the cross walk, regardless of whether the crosswalk light is amber or red.

 

 

It was moved and seconded

 

 

(1)

That the proposed 2009 initiatives for the Traffic Safety Advisory Committee, as outlined in the attached report dated December 12, 2008 from the Director, Transportation, be endorsed; and

 

 

(2)

That a copy of the above report be forwarded to the Council-School Board Liaison Committee for information.

CARRIED

 

 

5.

RICHMOND COMMUNITY CYCLING COMMITTEE – PROPOSED 2009 INITIATIVES

(Report:  December 12, 2008, File No.:  01-0100-20-RCYC1/2008-Vol01) (REDMS No. 2529505)

 

 

Joan Caravan, Transportation Planner, accompanied by Mr. Wei, commended Richmond Community Cycling Committee members Neil Smith and Barry Ogilvie, both of whom were in attendance.

 

 

Discussion ensued with comments being made on the following topics:

 

 

  •  

the “Bike Share” program has proven feasible in other communities, especially Paris, France, where 20,000 bikes are shared, and are maintained in good condition;

 

 

  •  

bicycles are defined by Provincial legislation as vehicles, and should be confined to roadways and bike paths, though municipalities do have the right to allow cyclists to ride on sidewalks;

 

 

  •  

the City could be liable if a cyclist collides with a pedestrian on a sidewalk; another concern is that cyclists on sidewalks may ride against the flow of traffic;

 

 

  •  

when the Canada Line opens, cyclists will have access to the bridge bike path.

 

 

The Chair requested that transportation staff inform Council of comments from the cycling community regarding the current ban by TransLink of bicycles on buses, due to the Pattullo Bridge closure.

 

 

It was moved and seconded

 

 

That the proposed 2009 initiatives of the Richmond Community Cycling Committee regarding cycling-related engineering and education activities, as described in the attached report dated December 12, 2008 from the Director, Transportation, be endorsed.

CARRIED

 

 

 

OLYMPIC BUSINESS & MAJOR PROJECTS DEPARTMENT

 

 

 

It was agreed to change the order of the agenda items, and that Item 7 would be discussed before Item 6.

 

 

6.

NO. 3 ROAD RESTORATION PROJECT – FUNDING UPDATE AND PROPOSED SCOPE OF WORKS FOR SECTION 1 FROM WESTMINSTER HIGHWAY TO GRANVILLE AVENUE

(Report:  December 31, 2008, File No.:  10-6525-08-01/2008-Vol 01) (REDMS No. 2536299)

 

 

Greg Scott, Director, Major Projects, provided a brief overview of the report and stated that, due to the narrower road right-of-way between Westminster Highway south to Granville Avenue, it is challenging to achieve the original streetscape vision. Discussion ensued and the following points were made:

 

 

  •  

the raised bike lane concept, as outlined in the proposed treatment of Section 1 of No. 3 Road, would not work in the mid-block sections, between the Bus Mall (located beside Saba Road) south to Granville Avenue;

 

 

  •  

on the east side of No. 3 Road, from Park Road to Granville Avenue, retailers’ entrances are in close proximity to the sidewalk; for this reason staff suggests that the proposed bike lane concept between the Bus Mall south to Granville Avenue would necessitate reconstruction of all store front entrances to address grade differences;

 

 

  •  

the installation of a bike lane between the Bus Mall south to Granville Avenue would require the elimination of all existing trees along Section 1 of No. 3 Road; the City does not have the right of way to plant two rows of trees on the west side of No. 3 Road, and are suggesting that a new row of trees be planted down the centre of No. 3 Road.

 

 

Mr. Wei joined Mr. Scott and discussion continued with Committee regarding the lack of a bike lane from the Bus Mall south to Granville Avenue for cyclists. The following points were made:

 

 

  •  

staff could explore bike lane designations on surrounding streets;

 

 

  •  

the goal is to have cycling lanes on No. 3 Road, and in the interim staff can explore making arrangements for the placement of signage to guide cyclists.

 

 

As a result of the discussion, the following amended recommendation was introduced:

 

 

It was moved and seconded

 

 

That:

 

 

(1)

The scope of work for Section 1 of the No. 3 Road restoration project be approved as outlined in the report; and

 

 

(2)

Staff review an alternative bike lane and connecting routes south on No. 3 Road until the permanent bike lane is constructed.

 

 

The question was not called as further discussion took place the idea of eliminating parking spaces in lieu of a bike lane was suggested. Staff advised that the idea was not feasible, as the bike lane would have to stop two blocks short of the Richmond-Brighouse Station.

 

 

The motion was then called and it was CARRIED.

 

 

 

(At this point Councillor Steves left the meeting at 5:23 p.m. and did not return.)

 

 

7.

CANADA LINE/NO. 3 ROAD RESTORATION - SPECIAL EFFECT LIGHTING UPDATE

(Report:  December 31, 2008, File No.:  10-6525-07-03/Vol 01) (REDMS No. 2525307)

 

 

Mr. Scott, accompanied by Brian Guzzi, Urban Design Coordinator, advised that the proposed location for special effect lighting of the Canada Line elevated guideway was along a 180-metre stretch of the Canada Line guideway, between Alderbridge Way and Lansdowne Mall. Discussion ensued and the following advice was provided to Committee. 

 

 

  •  

tests have been done to demonstrate possible special effect lighting to enhance the appearance of the concrete infrastructure and to activate the streetscape; the tests allowed the correction of deficiencies and provided the opportunity to fine tune the special effect lighting treatment;

 

 

  •  

response and input regarding the lighting tests was gathered from a website interactive poll;

 

 

  •  

the operating cost would be similar to the operation of City street lights;

 

 

  •  

special effect lighting is utilized in other cities to highlight architectural features, to activate infrastructure, and to illuminate landmark structures;

 

 

  •  

the City-owned land under the guideway in the Alderbridge Way/Lansdowne Mall zone is purposefully designed as a flexible, street-side public plaza, capable of hosting a variety of civic celebrations and festivities; the special effect lighting would help to illuminate and add texture to these events;

 

 

  •  

illuminated logos and messaging would not be allowed as part of the special effect lighting program.

 

 

A concern was raised regarding the cost of the special effect lighting. A comment was made that if the lighting effect was undertaken at a later date it would be more costly than if it were undertaken now.

 

 

It was moved and seconded

 

 

(1)

That special effect lighting of the Canada Line elevated guideway be implemented along No. 3 Road, north of the Canada Line – Lansdowne Station, between Alderbridge Way and the Lansdowne Mall Entry Road adhering to the design criteria as outlined in the attached report, subject to sufficient funds remaining after the No. 3 Road Restoration Project has been completed; and

 

 

(2)

That if there are insufficient funds remaining from the restoration of No. 3 Road, staff will report back to Council with an alternate funding strategy for consideration.

CARRIED

Opposed: Councillor Ken Johnston

 

 

8.

MANAGER’S REPORT

 

 

(a)

Robert Gonzalez, General Manager, Engineering and Public Works updated Committee on operational initiatives and programs undertaken in the Public Works and Engineering Department and remarked that they assist in keeping staff turnover to a minimum, especially during times when staff are retiring. He mentioned in particular:

 

 

  •  

a relief program has been designed to provide higher levels of consistent service. This initiative was helpful during the recent heavy rainfall and snowfall events, and the City was able to provide a consistent high level of service;

 

 

  •  

a new training program has enabled the Department to maintain programs;

 

 

  •  

there is now a first response service line. One identified ‘controller’ is called out to an incident and is able to decide whether the incident requires more staff.

 

 

In reference to the heavy snowfall in the City, Mr. Gonzalez noted that the first half of the weather event took place before December 31, 2008, and that not all funds from the 2008 budget were expended. The financial savings from 2008 can offset costs incurred in 2009.

 

 

Mr. Gonzalez added that Operational initiatives for 2009 are being designed and will be reported to Committee.

 

 

In response to a query regarding the heavy rainfall event experienced in the City, Mr. Gonzalez advised that the City’s sewers are designed to address the large amount of rainfall experienced. He added that some drains were plugged, but that residents participated in clearing drains near their homes and businesses. The City was able to minimize flooding incidents.

 

 

 

(At this point Mayor Brodie left the meeting 5:40 p.m. and did not return.)

 

 

(b)

Mr. Wei reported that he would attend a workshop at which TransLink would update attendees on the projects undertaken.

 

 

(c)

John Irving, Director, Engineering reported that the new UV disinfection system installed for the wave pool at Watermania to replace the ozone system to improve the (i) air quality, and (ii) water clarity had proven successful. An 80% reduction in combined active chlorine levels in the pool has been realized.

 

 

In response to queries, Mr. Irving responded that:

 

 

  •  

staff would communicate the reduction of chlorine levels to the public;

 

 

  •  

The web based sports field lighting at Minoru Park had realized over $1 million in cost savings and that staff is working on a number of other, similar energy programs; and

 

 

  •  

Funding has been received from BC Hydro that will enable the City to hire a person whose responsibility would be to communicate to residents the cost saving measures undertaken by the City for such things as savings on energy expenditure and so on.

 

 

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

 

 

It was moved and seconded

 

 

That the meeting adjourn (5:45 p.m.).

 

 

CARRIED

 

 

Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee of the Council of the City of Richmond held on Wednesday, January 21, 2009.

_________________________________

_________________________________

Councillor Linda Barnes

Chair

Sheila Johnston

Committee Clerk

 

 


1/26/2009 9:48:09 AM